I have found over the years, that I am terrible at asking for help. I have always put it down to being stubborn, which I totally am, but the more I meet people with chronic illnesses, the more I see how alike we all are. Everyone of us is awful at asking for help. You would think that people who struggle to get out of bed, turn on the kettle or even wash ourselves would want the help. And we do, we just don’t want to constantly feel like we are asking for it. This brings me to my first feel free to say…
1. Can I come round and do some housework for you.
Some days it’s just nice to do your own laundry as there can be a huge sense of achievement through managing to get it done. However, on a bad day, just loading the machine can really make your symptoms worse. Same goes for dishes, dusting, hovering etc. So if you have ten minutes, a morning/afternoon/evening to spare, I can tell you right now just how much your friend/loved one would appreciate you doing this.
2. I will pop round tomorrow if that’s ok?
It takes up a lot of energy that most of us don’t have to actually get out of the house and meet up with friends, so offering to come round is an amazing way to help us socialize without expending a lot of energy. Saying you will bring food is also amazing, as this takes off a huge burden we will feel knowing you’re coming round and there is nothing in the cupboards. Us spoonies (giving you a little bit of homework here or just a chance for you to ask me a question) don’t really like doing food shops as it is the most draining activity possible, so we generally just eat our cupboards bare before doing the next food shop/phoning for a pizza.
3. Would it be useful if I cooked you a few meals you can pop in your freezer?
This is probably one of the kindest things you could do for someone. We all know when we are tired just how frustrating it is having to cook. We also know on days were we are too tired to cook we all just go straight to the cereal cupboard. Well now imagine you have a few frozen meals you could just pop in the microwave….You wouldn’t be eating cereal then would you? Same goes for us chronically too tired to cook people. Just saying 😀
4. Don’t worry that you have to cancel we can rearrange for next week.
It’s horrible having to cancel plans you have with friends especially when you already feel isolated enough with a Chronic illness. However, getting this response always helps and receiving a follow up text a few days later to plan the next catch up is just plain wonderful.